So you have now arrived at the Vet ER with your pet, but what should you expect? This is a common question since hopefully most pet owners are not frequent visitors to emergency hospitals, and they run quite differently than your normal animal hospital. First, you should know that someone is always there to help you – 24 hours a day, 365 days a year – these places are fully staffed. You’ll be asked what’s going on, and to fill out some basic information about you and your pet, and you will also be asked two questions that can be hard to hear: Do you want to resuscitate/do you want CPR done? Can a catheter be placed and necessary medications be started? They will always ask these questions no matter what the situation is.
The treatment area is the heart of an emergency veterinary hospital, and it is ALWAYS beating fast. There may be multiple procedures taking place at once, there are pets in all conditions, lots of supplies, equipment, and of course the technicians and doctors working hard. It is truly an organized chaos. The staff isn’t hiding anything, they’re just working quickly. While your pet is in the treatment area being assessed they are also going to be looked over by a staff veterinarian who will conduct an exam on them to get to the bottom of what is going on. At that point, depending on the severity of your pet’s condition, they will either be kept in the treatment area or ICU (just like a human hospital) for close monitoring, or they will be brought out to wait with you in the waiting area. Always remember that ERs whether human or animal are run on a “triage system,” which in simple terms means that the most critical patients are seen first, even if they arrive after someone else. If you have to wait a bit with your pet, that is a good thing.
The next step is when the veterinarian who assessed your pet will discuss the conditions and a plan for treating whatever the identified problem may be. This is the time to ask all the questions you want, but also remember to listen to what the veterinarian has to say. Sometimes there are things that are simply unknown until initial tests can be run. For example, blood tests – which are as standard in animal hospitals as in human hospitals – may need to be run before an idea of what’s going on inside your pet can be fully considered. And also remember that these veterinarians are not the ones that have seen your pet over the years, nor do they have access to those records, so go easy on them. And finally, they will most often suggest things like blood tests or xrays, which may seem silly to you because you just had them done at your vet, but in an emergency hospital they need to be able to tell what’s happening at that very moment in order to help your pet so these things need to be done.
Here Are Some Links & Tips To Remember!
Pet Insurance is a great idea, and there are many options to choose from even for senior pets or pets with preexisting conditions (just like people!) Here's a great website that can help you out https://www.petinsurancereview.com/
Most veterinary emergency centers accept CareCredit as a payment option. The great thing about this service is that you get an instant approval and notification of exactly how much credit you are given, which you can then apply immediately to your bill. You can even complete the information long before you ever need it by going to their website at https://www.carecredit.com